NEW YORK -- Following the hustle and bustle of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Giving Tuesday is celebrated every Tuesday after Thanksgiving to encourage people to do good this holiday season.
Since its start in 2012, the global movement has inspired hundreds of millions to give, collaborate and celebrate generosity.
The 92nd Street Y, a community center in New York, is credited with coming up with the idea. A separate organization, called GivingTuesday, was later created to organize and promote it.
Charities and businesses use the hashtag #GivingTuesday on social media to spread awareness and seek donations.
Here's how you can help this Giving Tuesday:
For more than 70 years, The Walt Disney Company has supported Toys for Tots to bring comfort, happiness and inspiration to children and families in need during the holiday season.
U.S. Marine Corp Reserve's Toys for Tots Foundation has distributed more than 500 million toys to families in need since 1947. The foundation has always been surrounded by magic: Just a year after launching, Walt Disney gave his support to the program.
Join the Ultimate Toy Drive now through Tuesday, Dec. 14, by donating a toy online at shopDisney.com or a new, unwrapped in-person at Downtown Disney District at Disneyland Resort or Disney Springs at Walt Disney World.
Visit Disney.com/ToyDrive to learn more.
As the number of children facing hunger has risen during the COVID-19 pandemic, No Kid Hungry affirms that every $1 donated can provide up to 10 meals for kids in need. The nonprofit assists school meal programs, provides grants to community groups and advocates for policy change.
For more than 40 years, Make-A-Wish has helped children and teens diagnosed with critical illnesses have a wish granted, such as meeting a celebrity, becoming a VIP at theme parks or traveling to a dream destination. The organization has pledged to ensure that individual Giving Tuesday donations will be tripled this year.
Donations to the National Geographic Society fund a global community of Explorers who "work to save wildlife, protect our oceans and ecosystems, preserve our ancient heritage and solve the planet's mysteries and challenges." All donations made before midnight on Tuesday will have three times the impact, according to the Society.
This Giving Tuesday, make an appointment to donate blood as the organization is reporting a severe blood shortage. Every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood, according to the American Red Cross, including accident victims, transplant patients and those battling cancer.
Monetary donations to the American Red Cross can support the response to urgent humanitarian needs around the world.
Equal Justice Initiative supports criminal justice reform and and advocates for racial justice, according to its website. This includes providing "legal representation to people who have been illegally convicted" and working "with communities that have been marginalized by poverty."
Animal lovers looking to get involved this Giving Tuesday can volunteer at their local ASPCA adoption center or foster an animal. Donations also help support the animal rescue's work in fight animal cruelty and placing rescue animals in forever homes.
Save the Children -- a nonprofit dedicated to child health, education and protection -- has child sponsorship opportunities for kids in the U.S. and across the world. The organization is also offering one-time Giving Tuesday donation opportunities and promises to match all gifts under $300,000.
Feeding America is looking for volunteers to help with stocking shelves, assisting pantries and delivering meals across its nationwide network of food banks. Donations also help nonprofi reach over 40 million people in need every year, according to its website.
More ways to particpate
GivingTuesday has several ideas to consider for those who want to give their voices goods, time or money this year:
- Share kindness with your neighbors.
- Volunteer virtually or share your talents
- Give your voice to a cause that matters to you
- Show gratitude to healthcare workers, service providers, and other essential workers who are making sure we still have the services we rely on, even at risk to their own health.
- Discover a local fundraiser, community drive or coordinated event to join others in your area or with your same interests in giving back -- they need your help.
- Give to your favorite cause or a fundraiser to help those in need.
- Talk about giving and generosity using the hashtag #GivingTuesday
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
The Walt Disney Co. is the parent company of this station.